I stumbled upon this scene completely by accident, and I have been borderline obsessed with it all day.
I have been dabbling in watching The Good Wife for a while now, simply because many people consider it the best show on television. The episodes I’ve seen of the first season were amazing. Unfortunately, I haven’t had the time to truly binge-watch it, so technically, I’m still only a few episodes in.
Thanks to this BuzzFeed article, I was basically spoiled on the rest of the series, particularly about the relationship between Alicia Florrick (Julianna Marguiles) and Will Gardner (Josh Charles). That article linked to this scene from the show’s recent 100th episode, “The Decision Tree,” and I decided to watch it, for the sake of contextualizing the article.
The scene I watched was, without a doubt, one of the best I have ever seen from a television series, and no, I am not exaggerating. Even with the little plot details as I had, the emotional weight of the scene was palpable. A lot of that came from the sheer brilliance of Josh Charles’s performance. The show as I know it is often focused on Julianna Marguiles, so seeing him as a focal point was a surprise, a pleasant one. Saying he rose to the occasion would almost be an insult. I was captivated every moment he was on screen, as Will plotted his cross-examination of the woman he loved and despised. The look on Will’s face, remember a particularly close moment with Alicia, is devastating. There is a deep well of love, rage and searing pain that I doubt many even knew existed within Will, and Charles conveys it with such weary yet visceral ache that it can leave you shell-shocked.
Not to take anything away from Marguiles, because she is excellent in this scene too, but this is Josh Charles’s moment, probably the best work he’s ever delivered. It has to be on his Emmy reel; in fact, it could be the only clip he submits and should still triumph over any other performance by a leading actor in a drama this year. I cannot imagine an Emmy nomination list without his name on it, so I won’t even speculate on that. I will say, however, that Josh Charles should very well win an Emmy, and if he doesn’t, it will be an absolute travesty.
If this scene doesn’t drive you over to Amazon Instant Video to start binge-watching The Good Wife, then let me reiterate: this is the best damn show on television and you should be thanking whatever higher power you subscribe to for allowing it to be viewable for binge-watching. Watch this show NOW (especially if you happen to be an Emmy voter and are mulling over who should take home the gold for Best Lead Actor in a Drama Series).